Substitutes for Demerara sugar

Written by danielc | 13/05/2017
Substitutes for Demerara sugar
Demerara is a type of brown sugar. (Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

Demerara sugar is a type of natural brown sugar which is found in the United Kingdom. It is named after the Demerara colony in Guyana, which was the original source of the sugar. Ideal for baking, the golden brown, large granulated sugar can easily be substituted to produce equally palatable baked dishes.

Turbinado sugar

Turbindo sugar is a similar sugar to Demerara which is sold in the UK It is named after the centrifuges that it is formed in. The sugar is a slightly lighter colour to that of Demerara, with larger individual granules. One unit of Demerara sugar can be substituted by one unit of Turbinado sugar.

Granulated sugar

Granulated sugar, also known as regular sugar, white sugar or table sugar is the most common type of sugar found. Granulated sugar is produced by adding sulphur dioxide into the forming process, making it an unhealthier sugar product compared to Demerara and Turbino sugar. Granulated sugar crystals are much smaller and whiter in appearance due to the removal of the outer coating of the sugar crystals in the formation process. One unit of Demerara sugar can be substituted by one unit of granulated sugar.

Light brown sugar

Light brown sugar, also known as golden brown sugar is another type that can easily replace Demerara. It is often produced by incorporating molasses -- the by-product of sugar production -- to already produced white sugar. Light brown sugar crystals are much smaller than Demerara sugar, creating a smoother texture within the baking product. One unit of Demerara sugar can be substituted by one unit of light brown sugar.


Sucanat is a common substitute for light brown sugar. It is produced by retaining all of its molasses. It is essentially dried sugarcane that uses a lot less chemicals to create the desired taste and texture. The sugar particles are larger than Demerara and have a much grainier texture. One unit of Demerara sugar can be substituted by one unit of Sucanat.

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